Mind Tricks

Play some mind tricks to help yourself save for retirement

Having trouble saving for retirement? Try getting your mind right. What we mean by that is there are some mental games you can play with yourself to help you boost savings. Here are some to try.

  • Get Detailed. As USA Today points out, “retirement” is kind of a vague thing. So do yourself a favor and take the guessing game out of it. Plan out as much as you can about your golden years. Where do you want to live? Apartment or house? What about traveling? How about hobbies? The more concrete retirement seems, the more likely you are to save as much as possible to enjoy it. One way to really set things in is to try and vacation where you want to eventually retire (if you don’t already live there).
  • Automate as much as possible. Give your brain a break and automate your retirement contributions. If your workplace has a 401(k), be sure you’re signed up. If it doesn’t, open an IRA and set up auto deposits every month or every time you get paid. The less you have to think about when saving for retirement, the better.
  • Consider the costs. The next time you’re on the verge of spending big, think about the cost. Not the cost at the time but the cost of spending that money now as compared to saving/investing it and having the amount its grown into to spend later. One easy way to do this? Try out a compound interest calculator. As you’ll see, bypassing a purchase today and putting that money in savings can pay off big time. Consider this: A $100 expense now would fetch you about $500 in 25 years if you invest it instead (considering an annual return of about 7 percent).
  • Chris O'Shea

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